COLORADO CATHOLIC BISHOPS URGE RESPECT FOR THE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY RIGHTS OF GRETA LINDECRANTZ

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(Denver, CO) It has come to our attention that a Colorado woman, Greta Lindecrantz, who is a prominent investigator in criminal defense cases, was put in jail for her refusal to testify in a death penalty case because it is contrary to her religious beliefs as a Mennonite.

Religious freedom ensures that all people have the freedom to believe and act according to their faith; it is a fundamental right and constitutionally protected in the United States.  This right encompasses the ability to practice one’s faith openly, without undue interference from the government or others.

The common good is best served when deference is shown to individuals and organizations who choose to exercise their consciences in challenging situations in accord with their religious beliefs.  As a country and a State, we have long recognized the social value of genuinely accommodating deeply held religious convictions and this should hold true in the case of Greta Lindecrantz.

Ms. Lindecrantz should not be punished for her religious beliefs and convictions regarding the death penalty and the taking of human life.  The First Amendment protects religiously motivated individuals and organizations who seek to discern the truth and then act on it, including in the public square.

It is our hope that Ms. Lindecrantz’ s right to religious freedom will be respected and upheld and that she will not continue to be coerced into behaving in ways that are contrary to her faith or into accepting an ideology that is at odds with her beliefs.